The Bankside Kitchen

The Bankside Kitchen project was one of those where our clients had a really fun idea, but they weren't sure if it was a good one. Would it actually work? Would it be practical? Good for resale some day? After taking some measurements and thinking it through, together we came to a resounding "yes!" to all of those questions and got to work making it happen.


Our clients have a mid-sized 1950s ranch-style home and wanted to maximize their space. With no formal guest room, they intended to turn their existing dining room into a space for guests. But wanting to also expand their kitchen footprint into the current breakfast space would mean losing any sit-down area for meals.


Their idea was to knock down the wall between their kitchen and living room, build a big island, and attach a bench to it that would abut a dining table. And we made it happen!!


Dining table connected to island. Dining table in kitchen.

There are a few downsides to this:

  • There is literally NO separation between your kitchen and dining. A mess in one pretty much means a mess in the other.

  • No one can sit at the island in the traditional manner, facing anyone standing or working in the kitchen.

But we think the upsides are worth it!

  • Hello, character and fun!

  • The space-saving benefit may be the best part about this. They were able to have a bigger kitchen, a space for their guests, and still a large dining table.

  • The invitation to gather is just oozing from this space. Our clients love to host and we achieved an inviting, cozy feel with this kitchen design.

  • Their kitchen/dining area flows right into the living room, making hosting larger groups even easier.


Designing spaces almost always has some give and take. There are pros and cons to every decision made, from practicality to budget to opposing preferences. You just have to weigh out what is most important to you and make choices that reflect that. Designers can help you thinking through those things, tell you what is possible and what's not, and advise on long-lasting decisions.

What design decisions are you debating? Let us know in the comments!


See more of the Bankside Kitchen Project here.

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